Arsenal can 'deal with it' says Mikel Arteta as absentees mount at Arsenal
Aaron Ramsey has had a set-back in his recovery from injury while Mathieu Flamini is banned for the next four games
Wednesday 29 January 2014
Arsenal's foreboding February fixture list has been made all the more tougher by their depleted midfield options, although Mikel Arteta remains confident of staying on the right track.
The north Londoners could be usurped at the top of the Barclays Premier League on Wednesday evening after being held to a 2-2 draw at Southampton.
As if the inability to keep up the pressure on Manchester City and Chelsea was not frustrating enough, Arsene Wenger's midfield options narrowed at St Mary's after Mathieu Flamini incurred a four-match ban for a straight red card.
The Frenchman is joined on the sidelines by Aaron Ramsey, who Wenger revealed suffered a setback in his recovery from injury on Monday, and potentially Jack Wilshere, depending on his recovery from an ankle problem.
It is hardly the ideal scenario for the title challengers but Arteta, himself only just back from a calf injury, has vowed that the team will fight through.
"That happens and we have to deal with it," the Spaniard said.
"The schedule is really busy now - we have some really tough games coming up in the next two weeks and we have to deal with it and do our best.
"We had many options but that is one problem that we have had in the last few weeks: we have had a lot of injuries, losing Theo Walcott for a long time, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is just coming back, too many.
"Tomas Rosicky as well was out for a couple of weeks with his nose so we are a bit short at the moment but hopefully we can get people back.
"We can't do anything [about other teams] - it doesn't depend on us. There is a long way to go.
"Everyone is going to drop points and some will do so here at Southampton because it is a very tough place to come. Hopefully we will be fine."
Latest in Sport
Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Manchester United? 'My next move will be a surprise' says PSG striker
Javier Hernandez to Tottenham: Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino rejects reports over move for Manchester United striker
John Stones transfer latest: Manchester United interest could bump Chelsea bid up to £34m as Everton hold out for asking price
Mario Balotelli told he has no future at Liverpool as striker trains away from first-team
Ashes 2015 live: Latest score as England claim eight-wicket victory to take a 2-1 series lead over Australia after crushing win
- 1 Free porn websites could be shut down within months, says David Cameron
- 2 Stuart Baggs dies: Apprentice star 'The Brand' found dead aged 27
- 3 Whoopi Goldberg tells Cara Delevingne to suck it up: 'She's not famous. I'M famous'
- 4 1000 people played Foo Fighters simultaneously to try and get them to play their city
- 5 Every club should be like Labour – you can’t join as a new member unless you’re already a member
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn – or a return to a Labour government
Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn says 'we can learn a great deal from Karl Marx'
Is Britain really full up? Are migrants taking our jobs? Leading academic answers the most common anti-immigration claims
Public anger after French sunbather beaten up by gang for wearing a bikini in Reims park
Labour leadership: New poll shows party is now even 'less electable' than under Ed Miliband
While we fixate on Calais, the Home Office is quietly deporting dozens of migrants on 'ghost flights'